Whether you are searching Craigslist, eBay or a reputable piano store online for a used piano, plan ahead so things go smoothly.
First, contact a reputable piano tuner-technician. Find out how much it would cost to have them inspect and appraise the piano that you are interested in. If the piano is out of your local area, PianoAnswers.com can provide an online appraisal for only $8.95.
Next, contact your local piano mover and get a general idea of what a move might cost, should decide to purchase the piano you are interested in. Make sure you know the height of the piano in inches. This will help the moving company determine how heavy the piano is.
Now, have the piano inspection and appraisal done by your tuner or online.
Next, make an offer to the seller. This offer should be at or below the appraisal amount. It might also be the appraisal amount minus the cost of repairs that was determined upon the piano technician's inspection.
(i.e. if you buy a $500 car for your teenager, that car may very possibly cost you thousands of dollars. Be careful.)
Make arrangements with your piano mover. The buyer normally pays the piano mover.
Once the piano is delivered, schedule an appointment with your piano tuner-technician to repair and tune your piano.
After this is completed, ask to be on the piano tuner's reminder list so that you can make sure your piano is maintained properly by tuning it every six months.
Remember, even a free piano can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars to have moved and repaired.
Be careful and make sure your have a plan from the beginning. In the end, you will have a used piano in good repair and have an experienced piano tuner-technician and reliable piano mover.
Now your family can take lessons and practice on a well-maintained instrument which will help the student reach their goal of improving their piano performance.